Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC) is an alternative to traditional systemic chemotherapy, and one of the most innovative treatments available for complex abdominal cancers. While traditional chemotherapy is delivered through the bloodstream of a patient, HIPEC is a highly concentrated, heated chemotherapy treatment that is delivered directly to the abdomen of a patient during surgery.
Traditional chemotherapy causes severe side effects, and can only be safely administered in limited dosages. HIPEC, on the other hand, when delivered directly to the abdomen, allows doctors to increase the dosage while simultaneously decreasing side effects. During the procedure, doctors remove the tumors and then immediately fill the abdominal cavity of the patient with a heated chemotherapy mixture.
HIPEC should be repeated several times. Consequently, American doctors are developing procedures for repeating liquid intraperitoneal chemotherapy.
While peritoneal mesothelioma specialists are focusing on refining the HIPEC approach, European doctors are performing another alternative, innovative treatment for cancers called Pressurized Intraperitoneal Aerosol Chemotherapy, or PIPAC.
PIPAC is similar to HIPEC. Like HIPEC, PIPAC is delivered directly to the abdomen. However, instead of liquid, doctors use aerosol. Administered before or after surgery, doctors pump aerosol chemotherapy into the abdomen of the patient, which inflates it, much like a balloon. The intent is to spread the chemotherapy spray throughout the abdomen with the pressure from the chemotherapy spray, to eliminate all traces of cancer.
Researchers believe this procedure helps infiltrate the tumor, because the chemotherapy is more concentrated. The downside, however, is that it increases the risk of complications post-abdominal surgery. Higher concentrations mean a greater chance of debilitated healthy tissues, like the small intestine. Nonetheless, European researchers believe PIPAC is a more effective approach than HIPEC.
A recent study published in the April edition of BMC Cancer reported that PIPAC not only shrunk tumors, but also relieved symptoms in more than half of the patients in the study.
Other highlights of the study included:
While other parts of the world are moving forward with PIPAC, this method is not yet available in the United States. Instead, American doctors continue to refine HIPEC techniques.
European doctors have used the PIPAC method on many types of cancer since 2013. Europe, Asia, Australia, and South America continue with ongoing PIPAC clinic trials.
Our legal team has represented more than 10,000 victims of illnesses caused by exposure to asbestos. Our lawyers have the knowledge and experience necessary to fight for the fair compensation victims deserve. We are dedicated to obtaining just settlements for people who suffered injury through no fault of their own.
If you have developed an illness as a result of exposure to asbestos, contact a Philadelphia mesothelioma lawyers from Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler at 215-569-4000 or contact us online for more information or a free initial consultation.
Conveniently located in Center City, Philadelphia, we serve clients in Pennsylvania, South Jersey, and surrounding communities.